but even if…

Trials & Testing

Before You Scratch That Itch…

This morning on the way to school, the kids asked me why God created poison ivy. Not so good at thinking on my feet, and since we were in the car and I couldn’t Google the answer, I fell back on the tried and true (or tired and presumably true) response to these sorts of questions. “Well, kids… it’s a fallen world,” I said, using the prescribed mix of sadness and acceptance in my voice.

The kids said little in response, probably unsatisfied by the stock answer, and I think we changed the subject. I wasn’t sure if I liked my answer, either. I mean, it just leaves you with sort of a slump. And, left incomplete, it doesn’t paint God as the hero He is, which is something I always want to help highlight for my kids.

So as I drove home and made my morning coffee, I asked God more about it. And that’s how I found out that God can speak through anything. Even poison ivy. (Spoiler alert: I don’t mean in the burning bush sense, so if you’re picturing a talking plant vine, it wasn’t quite like that.)

Fight or Flight

Typically I drive around town without thinking too much about my speed. I follow the rhythms of traffic and obey the natural laws of the road (curves, hills, obstacles, terrain) that govern how fast I can safely travel. But occasionally, I’ll pass a police officer and glance down to see that my instinctive speed-o-meter is in direct violation of the signpost law. I’m surprised how reliably this triggers an adrenaline release–heart races, stomach turns, fingers and toes go numb, breath shortens, antiperspirant fails. I’m actually experiencing this physiological response right now, just by thinking about it. Weird.

Nothing More to Want

Shall not want? Is this possible? In our culture? Flesh wants. It wants approval and food and decadence and material things and, and, and… a list a mile long. It has a lot of things it has no business wanting. But…

But That Is Not All…

Jesus, the worthy Lamb, was made like us “in every way.” He gets how hard it is to be human. He gets you. When you lose your temper, He understands. When you’re scared, He knows that emotion. When you’re tempted, He’s lived through that too. God could have sat on His throne and condemned us for not living up to His standards, but instead He went to great lengths to reach out to us, to know us, and to make Himself known more intimately than ever before. Jesus is our bridge over troubled waters—our ladder between this life and the next. He is the Alpha-Omega, A-Z, Root and Vine, Author and Word, Divine Warrior and Prince of Peace—King of Kings and Lord of Lords. The Be-all and End-all.

Catch My Drift? (Survivial of the Weakest 2 of 2)

Chances are, If you’d been lost at sea for 34 days and someone asked you to get back in that raft and do it all again, you’d reply with a resounding “Heck, no!” and run the other way. But that’s what we do in our mind when we believe the enemy’s lies… it’s like voluntarily getting back in that raft, barely staying afloat in dangerous water.

Survival of the Weakest (1 of 2)

And having surrendered everything but their will to live, the trio could hardly believe their eyes when they saw land in front of them… they were safe. Alive. This amazing, true story of survival may seem like nothing you’ve experienced… but haven’t you? Isn’t this the story of man? A great fall. Becoming lost. Facing adversity. Highs. Lows. Struggling to gain control of the uncontrollable. Ultimate weakness. Surrender. Faith. Rescue.